David Miliband, President and CEO of the International Rescue Committee, said,

“This veto by President Trump is morally wrong and strategically wrongheaded. It sets back the hopes for respite for the Yemeni people, and leaves the US upholding a failed strategy.   Yemen is at a breaking point with 10 million people on the brink of famine. There are as many as 100 civilian casualties per week, and Yemenis are more likely to be killed at home than in any other structure. Shelling is increasing inside Hodeidah despite the ceasefire, while conflict rages on in the rest of the country, impeding efforts by humanitarians to reach thousands in desperate need. International backers like the US should be shepherding warring parties to peace - not fueling the conflict.

Yemeni men, women and children will pay the price for this veto with their safety and in the worst cases with their lives. President Trump has given an effective green light for the war strategy that has created the world’s worst humanitarian crisis to continue. It is striking that an IRC survey from last year revealed that the majority of Americans of all stripes reject their country’s part in this war.

This is the first time in history that a War Powers Resolution has passed the House and the Senate with bipartisan support and made it to the President’s desk. Congress has sent a united and unequivocal message, echoed by the American public: this war must end. We urge Congress to continue making its voice heard in support of Yemenis. The President must listen - not just to their voices but to the millions of Yemenis whose lives depend on his decisions.”

The IRC has been working in Yemen since 2012 and rapidly scaled our programming in 2015  to address greater humanitarian need caused by the conflict. While the ongoing conflict and restrictions of air and seaports create challenges to our operations, the IRC has maintained access to affected populations in and continues to provide life-saving healthcare, economic empowerment, women’s protection and empowerment, and education programming.